Printz Award

excellence in Young Adult Literat ure

The Michael L. Printz Award is an award for a book that exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature. It is named for a Topeka, Kansas school librarian who was a long-time active member of the Young Adult Library Services Association. The award is sponsored by Booklist, a publication of the American Library Association.

Award Web Site: Printz Award

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Author: A.S. King
2020 Printz Award - Winner

Five white teenage cousins who are struggling with the failures and racial ignorance of their dysfunctional parents and their wealthy grandparents, reunite for Easter.

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Author: Mariko Tamaki
2020 Printz Award - Honor

Upset about her on-again, off-again relationship with her girlfriend Laura Dean, Freddy Riley depends on her friends, a local mystic, and a relationship columnist for help in dealing with her situation.

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Author: Nikki Grimes
2020 Printz Award - Honor

Growing up with a mother suffering from paranoid schizophrenia and a mostly absent father, poet Nikki Grimes found herself terrorized by babysitters, shunted from foster family to foster family, and preyed upon by those she trusted. At the age of six, she poured her pain onto a piece of paper late one night--and discovered the magic and impact of writing. In this memoir in verse that will resonate with young readers and adults alike, Nikki shows how the power of those words helped her conquer the hazards--ordinary and extraordinary--of her life.

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Author: Nahoko Uehashi
2020 Printz Award - Honor

Nahoko Uehashi's The Beast Player is an epic YA fantasy about a girl with a special power to communicate with magical beasts and the warring kingdom only she can save.

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Author: Geraldine McCaughrean
2020 Printz Award - Honor

In the summer of 1727, Quill and his friends are put ashore on a remote sea stac to harvest birds for food, and only the end of the world can explain why no boat returns to collect them.

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Author: Elizabeth Acevedo
2019 Printz Award - Winner

Acevedo transforms everyday language into transcendent imagery in this novel-in-verse about Xiomara, who struggles to come into her own power amid her restrictive upbringing. Over the course of these lyrical, expressive, and honest poems, she grows from speaking with her fists to embracing her identity as the Poet X.

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Author: Deb Caletti
2019 Printz Award - Honor

Struggling with PTSD in the wake of a terrifying tragedy, Annabelle decides to run across the country in a physically demanding journey that mirrors the circuitous path of her emotional recovery. Caletti insightfully explores trauma, loss, and guilt while illuminating the damaging expectations our culture places on teenage girls.

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Author: Elana K. Arnold
2019 Printz Award - Honor

Ama has no memory of what comes before she wakes in Prince Emory’s arms, but she’s no ordinary damsel in distress. Using the language of classic fairy tales to shatter familiar tropes, Arnold asks readers to confront the ways systemic violence against women pervades cultural touchstones.

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Author: Mary McCoy
2019 Printz Award - Honor

In this political thriller set in a privileged high school, underestimated and unreliable narrator Claudia chronicles her rise to power. Sharp, biting humor pervades McCoy’s novel about vicious high school students embroiled in an explosive struggle for control.

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Author: Nina LaCour
2018 Printz Award - Winner

California native Marin, devastated by grief and questioning her reality, plans to spend her winter break in an empty dorm in upstate New York. But now her best friend, Mabel, is on her way to visit, and Marin must confront the loneliness that is threatening to take over her heart.

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Author: Jason Reynolds
2018 Printz Award - Honor

As Will, fifteen, sets out to avenge his brother Shawn's fatal shooting, seven ghosts who knew Shawn board the elevator and reveal truths Will needs to know.

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Author: Laini Taylor
2018 Printz Award - Honor

In a world of gods, monsters, and nightmares, orphan librarian Lazlo and goddess Sarai find each other in their dreams. Against the backdrop of a city reeling after a brutal war, this lushly built, extravagantly written tale explores vengeance, love, and mercy. 

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Author: Angie Thomas
2018 Printz Award - Honor

Traumatized after witnessing the violent death of a friend, Starr searches for her voice as she moves between her black neighborhood and predominately white private school. This emotional novel, inspired by volatile race relations in America today, explores the importance of family, friendship, identity, and the courage to seek justice. 

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Author: Deborah Heiligman
2018 Printz Award - Honor

Inspired by the more than 700 letters the van Gogh brothers wrote to each other, Heiligman uncovers fresh insights into Vincent’s development as an artist and his relationship with the brother who supported him emotionally and financially throughout his life

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Author: John Lewis
2017 Printz Award - Winner

Welcome to the stunning conclusion of the award-winning and best-selling MARCH trilogy. Congressman John Lewis, an American icon and one of the key figures of the civil rights movement, joins co-writer Andrew Aydin and artist Nate Powell to bring the lessons of history to vivid life for a new generation, urgently relevant for today's world.